ESPN Courts Women

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ESPN "Butter"
ESPN is using this week's broadcast of the ISU World Figure Skating Championships to reach out to women. While the network's audience skews heavily male, coverage of figure skating provides an exception -- and once the women show up, ESPN is inviting them to stay.

The network began teasing its coverage on female-targeted cable channels earlier this month with a series of ads from Ground Zero and HSI director Gerard De Thame. The effort shows everyday objects -- a pat of butter, a tin can -- captured in moments of beauty and grace. During the championships, a new commercial -- also from Ground Zero -- aims to highlight the network's other female-friendly fare, like the LPGA and the WNBA. In the spot, directed by Food Chain's Vince Malone, we see men straightening up a dive bar in preparation for a slightly more upscale affair as the copy reads, "Welcome, ladies."

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